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February, 2015:

THIS MOMENT IS PERFECT

James Andrew

James Andrew

When all of the inherent baggage of the past drags one down, and fearful projections of future calamity find one utterly paralyzed, it’s time to get present — something as simple as taking time to observe one’s breath or just being aware of, say, the sunlight (if there happens to be any!) can bring some much needed grounding. It’s an age old technique and has been re-espoused and championed by nearly every modern master of the mind (Eckhart Tolle, Thich Nhat Hanh, Shunryu Suzuk, Jiddu Krishnamurti; the list goes on and on). Now is where everything that we know and experience is and always will be! If everything is a mess, well then, that is how it is. Whether one likes or dislikes that experience doesn’t actually have much to do with things — that mess has a perfection about it — a perfect mess! We only begin to have problems when we start to see things one way or another — when we start to fuss — and then we waste a LOT of energy running away from (or looking for, as the case may be) what we perceive to be a huge threat or an irresistible object of desire.

Of course one does need to try to create a better environment and reality for oneself and others, but taking it easy and being still is an absolute prerequisite to any effort. From there, we can scoop up some of the tremendous energy that is all around us right now, and if we want, fashion it with clarity into a better situation.

In this effort, it is really important to recognize how we perceive struggle; I find great comfort in the fine words of Neale Donald Walsch:

“It is okay to be at a place of struggle. Struggle is just another word for growth. Even the most evolved beings find themselves in a place of struggle now and then. In fact, struggle is a sure sign to them that they are expanding; it is their indication of real and important progress. The only one who doesn’t struggle is the one who doesn’t grow. So if you are struggling right now, see it as a terrific sign — and celebrate your struggle.”

As you know, I’m quite an experienced daydreamer (and it got me into no small bit of trouble as a youngster in school!), but even now, I quite often need to remind myself to use daydreaming in a more powerful way, and to be aware of the stories I’m telling myself. Those imaginings, whatever they may be, become reality! Try creating a truly palpable and beautiful daydream (that is, make believe as if it were already manifest) on a regular basis — I myself make this a daily routine — and watch your very best imaginings blossom in this wonderfully perfect moment!

Giving thanks for the sunlight (and the gorgeous strains of Carmen playing in the background), I’m thinking of the infinite potential of the here and now. I’m sporting a Tom Ford era Gucci navy cotton velvet jacket, Tom Ford ink and ivory cotton plaid shirt, purple wool tie, purple glen plaid silk pocket square, glasses and black and tan leather loafers, Etro wool challis scarf in a Sonia Delaunay inspired print, Uniqlo slim jeans, Ralph Lauren purple alligator belt with sterling buckle, vintage Rolex, Tom Ford bronzing gel and my fragrance is Lorenzo Villoresi’s, Garofano.

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VALENTINE’S DAY FLASHBACK

James Andrew at the Frick Museum Boucher room - photo Lars Stefan.

James Andrew at the Frick Museum Boucher room – photo Lars Stefan.

Over the years, we’ve worked with some truly brilliant photographers, and we’ve collaborated together to produce some pretty epic images, if I do say so myself! One of my favorites is the above by the incomparable Lars Stephan for a WIJW piece entitled Romantically Rococo — a post created in conjunction with the Frick to promote the museum as the perfect Valentine’s destination. As things turned out, the photograph was extremely popular, and led to an appearance and interview in Italy’s foremost newspaper, Corriere della Sera. The issue also featured the likes of Vogue’s magnificent editor at large, Hamish Bowles among a select group of other notable aesthetes! Needless to say, I was quite thrilled and honored by the tremendous accolade!

Thanks to the Frick, WIJW is finding the Boucher room a perfect setting to gather a few of Cupid’s pointed arrows. I’m reclining in a Tom Ford shocking pink silk dressing gown from the Tom Ford boutique at 845 Madison Avenue, white cotton voile and lace tuxedo shirt, black and white polka dot silk bow tie, tuxedo pants and black patent leather opera pumps all by Gucci vintage Cartier gold fountain pen and platinum and diamond cuff links and shirt studs from my dear friend private jeweler Raj Tolaram. 

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SEBASTIAN ERRAZURIZ

Sebastian Errazuriz an James Andrew

Sebastian Errazuriz and James Andrew

We had the great pleasure of meeting with the Chilean-born artist Sebastian Errazuriz at his Brooklyn studio recently (Robert Couturier introduced us a few months ago, and having been quite captivated by the artist, we’d been itching to see his work in person). We also do love to hear of inspirational lives, and Errazuriz’s certainly fits the bill.

A Church of One – Sebastian Errazuriz

A Church of One – Sebastian Errazuriz

“I don’t know where the line is between art and design” says Errazuriz. The fact is, he seamlessly blends both worlds — the functional and the poetic, a talent that caught Sotheby’s eye early on in Errazuriz’s career while the auction house was looking for exceptional 20th century Latin designers. Of course this sort of talent had been honed from a very young age — Errazuriz recounts his father, ( a respected art professor), required a 5 year old Errazuriz to have a working art historical and critical knowledge of a visiting Turner exhibition! It seems the stars were aligned from the start, and in his teens and twenties, Errazuriz made a rather meteoric assent in Chile — from art and design columnist to television host to celebrated art activist (of particular note was his Tree Memorial at the national soccer stadium to honor those many who suffered under the oppressive Pinochet dictatorship).

Magistral Cabinet - Sebastian Errazuriz

Magistral Cabinet – Sebastian Errazuriz

Though having spent much of his money on public art projects in Chile, the young artist set his sights on NYC, and it’s not surprising that he was offered scholarships both at NYU AND Columbia! After receiving his Masters at NYU, Erraziz set up a studio, and soon gained representation at the prestigious Christina Grajales Gallery here in NYC and also later with Salon 94.

The-Samurai-Cabinet-Sebastian-Errarzuriz

The-Samurai-Cabinet-Sebastian-Errarzuriz

And what of the future? “I work hard and fast,” he tells us. “If I consider the work done to date and consider another four decades of work, I hope to be looking at a giant exhibition with over 15.000 drawings, 1500 maquettes, and some 1500 major works of different kind. Add some 75 large scale Public art interventions; all in all its my little illustrated encyclopedia of how the world can be looked at again differently by everyone.”

Needless to say, we’ll be watching with bated breath! Do take a moment to peruse his website meetsebastian.com and his Instagram feed: @sebastianstudio

For our studio visit picture (top) we’re seated in front of Errazuriz’s monumental work entitled Blow Me. I’m sporting a Tom Ford camel cashmere silk jacket with suede elbow patches, lavender and white striped cotton Oxford cloth shirt, purple wool knit tie, vintage orange and purple silk plaid pocket square, Mackintosh brown micro corduroy down vest, pearl cuff links, Polo Ralph Lauren purple cotton corduroy pants and purple alligator belt with sterling buckle, Etro orange suede tasseled loafers, vintage Rolex and my fragrance is Creed Windsor — a bit of Tom Ford bronzing gel for a mid winter touch of sun.

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